Volume 2 | Number 1
January 2009 


arrowIntroducing Thailand
arrowDo you need export credit insurance? Damn right you do!
arrowExport Council - NAAMSA
arrowDoing business in ... Nigeria!
arrowBilateral Chambers: The SA - Nigeria Chamber of Commerce
arrowE-marketplaces - for the wine industry
arrowGet to grips with the basics of Intellectual Property
arrowGrab a share of the 2012 London Olympic Games
arrowITC - Cotton Exporters' Guide
arrowSomething to read ... about exports and exporting



Exporters Club

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Step 8: Preparing your export plan

Synopsis of research already done
Revisiting an export SWOT analysis of the firm
Setting the export objectives of the firm
Preparing an export marketing strategy for your firm
Preparing an export budget for your firm
Outlining an implementation schedule for your export activities
Preparing and presenting your export plan
Obtaining approval for your export plan


Export experiences from other parts of the world

Spiralling export sales on the stairway to success from Cornwall
Export success for mining tools manufacturer in the UK
Lithuanian IT company boosts export sales
The Internet and SME exporting – A Canadian success story
Australian export success story: Exporting fashion to the Philippines
Farmers export smoked limes in partnership with private sector – Sri
Export of vegetables from Zimbabwe and Kenya
Manufacturing global growth - Canada


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From the Editor

Welcome to the first edition of ExportHelp in 2009! Let me also wish you all the best for the rest of this year. May it be a prosperous year for us all.

Neels Bothma
Unfortunately, this is not the best of times. The global financial crisis has pushed some of the world's leading nations into a recession and we read about an increasing number of well-known global companies closing down or retrenching staff every day. The losses that these companies are experiencing are sometimes mind-boggling! While the full-effect of the global crisis has yet to hit South Africa, we are likely to face similar recessionary problems as the leading nations, as we move deeper into the year (although Minister Manual says in the lead story of a recent issue of the Sunday Times newspaper that SA may avoid a recession– but he doesn't really say how).

Now is the time to export!

This is not the time to throw up your arms and to abandon your export endeavours. In fact, now is the time to consolidate your export efforts and to establish a foot-hold in new markets abroad. After all, our weak rand should ensure that your products and services represent value-for-money for foreign buyers. More importantly, however, as your global competitors become more inward-looking to try and bolster their domestic markets and sales (as so often is the case in troubling times), so you should become more outward-looking to grab and expand your share of global markets.Of course, this will not be easy. It will take courage, insight and a lot of time and effort, but it can be done. I’m also not suggesting that you abandon your local markets for international ones. Clearly you need to focus on improving your position within the domestic market, but don’t drop your exports in these crucial times. Instead, look towards alternative electronic channels and methods to find and service new global markets. It still surprises me that many exporters either don't have websites or hardly use the web to research markets and market themselves. The web offers you an affordable and easy-to-access way of learning about and reaching out to new and existing customers around the world.

Helping you go ‘e’

In upcoming issues of our newsletter and on the ExportHelp website we will look at alternative ways to use the online world as a means of improving your export business. There are a lot of opportunities and a lot to be done. It’s not easy and it’s not quick, but can I assure you that if you adopt the ways of the virtual world and apply them with forethought, you will reap the benefits. And you know what; it’ll have a positive impact on your domestic business as well!

During the course of this year, we will look at how you should be using your website and email to market your company, how you can do research on the web, how you can sell your products online, how you can find new customers, how you can service and keep your customers happy, how you use Google ads to grow your business and how you can keep track and measure the success of your online activities.

Sorry about the long introduction and hope that you enjoy and find benefit from this issue of ExportHelp. If there is something specific that you would like us to cover, please drop us a line at chris@exporthelp.co.za.


Neels Bothma


Introducing Thailand

Thailand is an emerging economy. It enjoyed the world's highest growth rate from 1985 to 1996 - averaging 9.4% annually. According to the Department of Foreign Affairs, South Africa's main exports to Thailand include stainless steel, aluminium, flat-rolled iron and steel, paper pulp, chemicals, fresh fruit and ferro-alloys. If you've never thought about Thailand as a potential export market, it might be worth looking into. Learn more about Thailand.

Do you need export credit insurance? Damn right you do!

Exports remain one of the riskiest business ventures that you can undertake. You will encounter export risk around every corner; from political risks to economic risks, foreign exchange risks, payment risks and many more. To read more about the many types of export risks that you may encounter in exports, click here. So how can you protect yourself against these many and varied risks?

Well, you can negotiate payment terms that favour you as the seller (more about this in a future issue). You can plan your exports carefully and try to foresee potential problems that you may encounter and then take preemptive actions accordingly. You can hedge your foreign exchange exposure and you can undertake credit checks on your potential customers.But perhaps the best way to protect yourself is to get help from a professional export credit insurer such as Credit Guarantee.

By taking out export credit insurance, you can protect yourself from non-payment, late payment or incomplete payment on the part of your foreign buyer. The expert advice you get will ensure that you don’t step into any payment and/or credit traps and you will be better prepared to face the challenges and risks of exporting. With their support you may be able to tap into alternative financing mechanisms because you can offer your financiers additional protection.

What is more, export credit insurance is affordable, especially if you consider the consequences and cost of having to deal with bad debt in your export efforts. A single case of non-payment can escalate into a much bigger loss because you may be saddled with paying for the return of unsellable goods to South Africa, including the cost of inspection, customs duties, warehousing and other related costs.

To learn more about how Credit Guarantee can help you in your export endeavours, click here.

Export Council - The National Association of Automobile Manufacturers of South Africa

The National Association of Automobile Manufacturers of South Africa, or better known as NAAMSA, is the leading authority and information provider for the South African motor industry, and is also a recognised Export Council for the automotive industry in South Africa. NAAMSA has been hard at work transforming itself and its membership base now includes major importers and distributors of new vehicles as well as local manufacturers and assemblers, making it the pre-eminent organisation for all franchise holders marketing vehicles in South Africa. A sign of the times is the new NAAMSA Export Division as the industry reaches ever higher for overseas markets, and a whole range of activities linked to the Motor Industry Development To learn more about NAAMSA and what they can do for you, visit their website.


Doing business in ... Nigeria!

Although Nigeria often receives a lot of bad press because of the 419 scams, there is still a lot of business taking place between the two countries. We have put together a list of websites that should provide you with a wealth of information on doing business in Nigeria. Check them out!


Bilateral Chambers: The South Africa - Nigeria Chamber of Commerce

Considering that our focus above has been on doing business in Nigeria, it seems appropriate that we introduce the South African – Nigerian Chamber of Commerce (SA-NCC) to you. The SA-NCC was established for the purpose of promoting, facilitating and assisting South African business with Nigeria. The idea is to assist south African firms adapt to the very different rules and culture that define business in Nigeria. The initiative has the support of the Nigerian High Commission and is driven by several well-known private-sector companies including KPMG, Standard Bank of South Africa, MTN, Phillips Consulting, Nampak and First Bank of Nigeria. Click here to visit the SA-NCC website.

E-marketplaces - for the wine industry

E-marketplaces come in two different forms; general and specialised! In previous issues, we have presented two general, all-purpose e-marketplaces in earlier editions of our newsletter, namely Alibaba.com and Global Sources. In this issue we take a slightly different approach. We focus on specialised e-marketplaces, namely for the wine and spirits industry. The selling of wine and spirits over the internet has taken off in recent years, with the establishment of several e-marketplaces that specialise in these products. For exporters interested in this sector, we recommend that you visit the following e-marketplaces:

  1. BevNetwork –(based in and focuses mainly on US markets)
  2. VerticalWine – (in French only)
  3. Pro-Wine– (with a focus more on Europe)
  4. Wine-Searcher – (really a search engine of wine stores, winery, and wine auction, price lists and catalogues)
  5. Global Wine & Spirits (GWS) – (a professional e-marketplace based in Canada)
  6. Wine Traders Club – (a division of GWS with a focus on rare and expensive wines)
  7. Agrelma– (based in the UK, but with a European and global focus, this portal specialises in foods and wines)

Get to grips with the basics of Intellectual Property


IP PANORAMA is an online e-learning product aimed at helping SMEs understand what Intellectual Property (IP) is all about and how to incorporate IP in a firm’s business strategy. Developed jointly by the Korean Intellectual Property Office (KIPO), the Korea Invention Promotion Association (KIPA), and the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO), IP PANORAMA translates the complicated legal jargon of IP into easy-to-understand terms and concepts. Using a story-telling structure and graphics supported with the latest educational technology, this is a must-read introduction to IP for all exporters.  The programme covers the following topics:

  • IP PANORAMA 01: Importance of IP for SMEs
  • IP PANORAMA 02: Trademarks and Industrial Designs
  • IP PANORAMA 03: Invention and Patents
  • IP PANORAMA 04: Trade secrets
  • IP PANORAMA 05: Copyright and related rights
  • IP PANORAMA 06: Patent information
  • IP PANORAMA 07: Technology Licensing in a Strategic Partnership
  • IP PANORAMA 08: IP in the digital economy
  • IP PANORAMA 09: IP and international trade
  • IP PANORAMA 10: IP audit
  • Click here to visit the IP PANORAMA website.

    Sourced from: http://www.intracen.org/btp/wtn/newsletters/2007/3_2/3_2_q9.htm

Grab a share of the 2012 London Olympic Games

The 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games to be held in London translates into $12 billion worth of opportunities. Although many of the major design-build projects have been awarded, many more will be available for tender. Although construction represents a major portion of the London 2012 budget, opportunities exist across a whole spectrum of industries including communications, business services, logistics, overlay and retail. The three major main contracting authorities for the Olympic and Paralympic Games are the Olympic Delivery Authority (ODA), the London 2012 Organising Committee (LOCOG), and the London Development Agency (LDA). South African exporters interested in competing for these tenders should register on the new CompeteFor website. Referred to as a business dating agency, CompeteFor matches companies to thousands of opportunities to supply London 2012 contractors. Once the SA exporter has registered on the site, they can view the opportunities advertised. Companies must then complete a business profile to be able to compete for opportunities.

Cotton Exporters’ Guide

This is a comprehensive guide providing a view of all aspects of the cotton value chain from a market perspective. It touches on numerous topics relevant to the cotton exporter and provides a list of useful addresses and web resources. Click here to access the ITC’s purchase page for this guide.

Something to read ... about exports and exporting

Credit Notes

Credit Guarantee publish a twice-annual publication called Credit Notes that covers a range of topics of interest to exporters. Their latest edition covers the following topics:

  1. China is key to Africa's growth
  2. Timber significant contributor to SA’s economy
  3. The Russian Federation
  4. Free State
  5. Credit Guarantee’s guide to: Central and North America
  6. The investment potential of potash
  7. Economic overview
  8. World markets update
  9. Protect your assets from Customs

To download this issue, click here.

Business Law in China

With its huge population and above average growth rates, China has been a country of focus form many exporters around the world. The problem is that China is very different from South Africa in many respects, not least of all its application of law. If you intend doing business in China, you need to gain a better understanding of the prevailing business law in China. Business Law in China is an invaluable work of compilation, analysis and assessment of the current state of Chinese business law. The practical eBook format permits bouquets of chapters organized by themes which can be purchased for reduces prices. For more information about the authors, the scope of the book and the content, download this flyer or go directly to the website.


Business Law in China

Please note that ExportHelp cannot be held responsible for any action taken on your part based on the information we provide. Always seek legal advice before becoming contractually involved in any international trade dealings.

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